Moshi — TANZANIAN coffee has the potential to fetch higher prices on the market through improved processing methods and general care given to harvest and post-harvest practices, the Director-General (DG) of Tanzania Coffee Board, Eng Adolph Kumburu said.
He told the 'Daily News' in an interview here on Wednesday, that in Tanzania, approximately 11 per cent of coffee is processed centrally while 89 per cent is home processed. "In the later case, because of deficient post-harvest practices, coffee quality lacks homogeneity and suffers from inconsistency which is a major deterrent to large international buyers," the DG noted.
Eng. Kumburu said at the moment, the vast majority of Tanzania's coffee was used in blends as the insufficient volume in national production and the heterogeneous quality prevents larger roasters from developing Tanzanian coffee, as single origin. "Improving quality of coffee produced through application of good harvest and post-harvest practices, while increasing the volume of fully-washed coffee, is therefore a priority," he said.
Meanwhile, Mr Kumburu was of the view that considering the potential quality of Tanzanian coffee, there were various opportunities to explore in order to create shared value for all the industry stakeholders. He said at the same time, there was need to ensure a long-term sustainable coffee industry by addressing challenges in areas of environment, child labour, gender equity and participation of youths in coffee farming.
"Encouraging farmers to produce an increased quantity of sustainable coffee would not only be beneficial to the Tanzanian coffee sector on the long term by ensuring preservation of the environment as well as socio-economic and gender equity, but also represent an economic opportunity to seek price premiums in the international markets," Mr Adolf hinted.
The DG further noted that continued promotion of Tanzanian coffee, including emerging new markets in China, India, Brazil, Eastern Europe, Pacific Asia, to mention but a few, could also bring many economic benefits as well as the development of economic partnerships with relevant countries such as Japan, US and Europe.
Eng. Adolf added that value addition could also be achieved by producing and selling consumer-ready products, such as roasted beans, roast and ground coffee as well as instant coffee in the domestic and regional markets, saying other initiatives could support the development of domestic consumption of coffee to that effect.